ORONO, Maine - The New Hampshire Wildcats went on a 14-0 second half run to come within two points of the Maine Black Bears, but the home team pulled away to a 69-58 victory Saturday afternoon in America East women's basketball action at Alfond Arena.
Down 53-37 with 13:45 remaining in the second half, UNH intensified its defense, beginning with a steal and layup by Ebony Woods (Philadelphia, Pa.). Junior Ray Williams (Mississauga, Ontario) scored seven consecutive points during the run, and Lindsay Adams (Theresa, N.Y.) hit a free throw with 6:29 left to cut the Maine lead to two at 53-51.
Bracey Barker broke the UNH scoring run with a layup with 5:58 left, then Ashley Underwood scored eight unanswered points over the next two minutes to give the Black Bears a 12-point cushion. The Wildcats attempted to come back again thanks to three-pointers by Emily Hardy (Westbrook, Conn.) and Danielle Clark (Corinna, Maine), but Underwood helped ice the game by making four free throws in the final minute.
Clark led the Wildcats with 16 points, 13 of them in the first half, plus she pulled down five rebounds. Woods scored 15 points and dished out four assists, while Williams contributed ten points and five rebounds off the bench.
Underwood led all players with 24 points, while Barker contributed 17 points, nine rebounds, and four assists. Brittany Bowen hit three three-pointers in the first half to help the Black Bears jump out to a
39-28 halftime lead, and Lindsey Hugstad-Vaa added eight points, six rebounds, and three blocked shots to the winning effort.
Maine went on a 14-2 run midway through the first half to take a 21-14 lead, then outscored UNH 13-6 in the final five minutes to establish the 11-point halftime lead. The Black Bears shot 52.2 percent from the field, including 6-of-10 from the three-point line, in the first half while holding the Wildcats to 33.3 percent shooting from the field in the first half.
New Hampshire (13-11, 5-8 America East) returns to Durham for the final two home games of the regular season, facing the Albany Great Danes on Wednesday, February 22 and the Boston University Terriers on Saturday, February 25. For ticket information, call 1-866-WILDCAT or go online to www.unhwildcats.com/tickets.